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He is best known for appearing in two British soap operas, Doctors, in which he played Dr. Nick West from 2006 until the character was run over and killed in 2008, and Emmerdale, in which he has played DC Nick Henshall over two separate periods from 2008 to 2011, until the character committed suicide. He has also appeared in a third soap opera, EastEnders as the hitman Carter who supposedly killed Paul Trueman.
He is also known for playing D.S./D.I. Trevor Hands in two seasons of the ITV drama Murder Investigation Team, two seasons of Channel 4's Totally Frank and the BBC One series Blessed, playing Ronnie, a Jaggeresque musician . He first came to prominence as the character of Tony in a series of British television commercials for the Peugeot 106 car, alongside Julie Graham and Annie Dunkley in the mid-1990s.
He appeared in the final episode of BBC2's Cradle to Grave in October 2015.
Mckell starred in the cult film Essex Boys alongside Sean Bean as drug dealer Wayne Lovell.Other films include Beneath Still Waters, Act's Of Godfrey, The Low Down, Blood, Bar, Death, Freight, Shouting Men, Outpost: Rise of the Spetsnaz, and Who Needs Enemies.
From 7 December 2015 - 3 January 2016 Mckell will be appearing in his first panto as Abanazar in Aladdin at the Derby Arena.
McKell started his working life as a musician. He was the singer/songwriter for the band The Park, penning hits for Toyah, Dollar and Julien Clerc. His solo career after deals with Phonogram, WEA and EMI was cut short by a near fatal car crash in August 1991. Michael returned to the stage in Macbeth at The Lyric Hammersmith in the late 1990s. He has appeared in West End musicals, including Blood Brothers Rod Stewart musical Tonight's the Night, written and directed by Ben Elton. Elton later went on to write the character Ronnie for McKell in his BBC comedy Blessed.Michael played "Lank" in the double Olivier winning production of "Crazy For You" 2012 and returned to the role he created "Stoner" in the 2014 production of "Tonight's The Night"
In 1985 he toured as Michael St James with French star Julien Clerc and worked with legendary French singer/songwriter Serge Gainsbourg.
McKell released an EP, Shower Over Moon Street, in 2009 and performed tracks from his album " Shower Over Moon Street" at The Royal Albert Hall in November 2009. "Save Me" the first single from the album was released 25 July 2010.
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